Letters

Letters 05-02-2016

Facts About Trails I would like to correct some misinformation provided in Kristi Kates’ article about the Shore-to-Shore Trail in your April 18 issue. The Shore-to-Shore Trail is not the longest continuous trail in the Lower Peninsula. That honor belongs to the North Country Trail (NCT), which stretches for over 400 miles in the Lower Peninsula. In fact, 100 miles of the NCT is within a 30-minute drive of Traverse City, and is maintained by the Grand Traverse Hiking Club...

North Korea Is Bluffing I eagerly read Jack Segal’s columns and attend his lectures whenever possible. However, I think his April 24th column falls into an all too common trap. He casually refers to a nuclear-armed North Korea when there is no proof whatever that North Korea has any such weapons. Sure, they have set off some underground explosions but so what? Tonga could do that. Every nuclear-armed country on Earth has carried out at least one aboveground test, just to prove they could do it if for no other reason. All we have is North Korea’s word for their supposed capabilities, which is no proof at all...

Double Dipping? In Greg Shy’s recent letter, he indicated that his Social Security benefit was being unfairly reduced simply due to the fact that he worked for the government. Somehow I think something is missing here. As I read it this law is only for those who worked for the government and are getting a pension from us generous taxpayers. Now Greg wants his pension and he also wants a full measure of Social Security benefits even though he did not pay into Social Security...

Critical Thinking Needed Our media gives ample coverage to some presidential candidates calling each other a liar and a sleaze bag. While entertaining to some, this certainly should lower one’s respect for either candidate. This race to the bottom comes as no surprise given their lack of respect for the rigors of critical thinking. The world’s esteemed scientists take great steps to preserve the integrity of their findings. Not only are their findings peer reviewed by fellow experts in their specialty, whenever possible the findings are cross-checked by independent studies...

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4Play: The Gaslight Anthem, The La‘s, Arcade Fire, We Are Scientists

Kristi Kates - July 26th, 2010
The Gaslight Anthem - American Slang - Side One Dummy
Despite looking like they were part of the cast of The Commitments (the 1991 movie about Irish rockers), The Gaslight Anthem is actually from New Jersey, where they’ve adapted bits of The Ramones and Bruce Springsteen both into their sound. Their sophomore set on the SideOneDummy label, this album is loaded with mean-street guitar riffs, soulful character sketches, and chugging rhythms. Highlights include the experimental “Diamond Street Church Choir,” the anthemic “Orphans,” and the memorable reminiscer “Old Haunts.”





The La’s - Callin’ All 1986-1987 - 101
This nifty box set of the underrated Brit band includes plenty of extras, from a 60-page liner notes booklet, a plethora of never-before-seen photos, and several live recordings from London’s Town and Country Club and The Marquee. But of course, it’s the music that La’s fans are primarily here for, and that’s here tenfold, encompassed in a 95-track listing of the band’s hit (singular) and rare tracks. The trick? Many of the tracks are repeated in different versions, but at least you get the hit (“There She Goes”) and some great B-sides.




Arcade Fire - The Suburbs - Merge
Brothers Win and Will Butler are said to have themed their latest set after a pair of influences - one, their own upbringing in the suburbs of Houston, TX; and two, musicians like Joe Strummer and Bob Dylan, who carried worldly vibes even though they were just suburb kids, too. Surprisingly (or not? Who knows what the marketing plan was), the first two singles released are actually the two best tracks on the set - “The Suburbs” with its pensive lyrics contrasting against bright synths and a hooky refrain, and the upbeat, fast-moving “...May.”





We Are Scientists - Barbara - Red General
Snagging former Razorlight drummer Andy Burrows to take care of the beats, Keith Austin Murray and Christopher Ian Cain, aka We Are Scientists, recorded their latest set in London, L.A., and NYC, sticking with the diversity among the bandmates that equals them out to one melodically diverse band. Less produced than previous efforts, Barbara’s tunes are catchy and propulsive, from the recurrent chorus of “Nice Guys” to the self-assured alt-pop panache of “I Don’t Bite” to the surprising interruption of the mellower “Foreign Kicks.”

 
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